SALT LAKE CITY — The unconscious patient a Salt Lake City nurse was trying to protect when she refused to draw his blood for police has died.
Bill Gray, who was from Idaho, was driving a semi-trailer July 26 on U.S. 89 near Wellsvile when another vehicle crashed into him, Fox 13 reported. The second vehicle’s driver was fleeing from police and died in the crash, KSL reported.
Gray was taken to University Hospital with burns on 46 percent of his body, according to KSL. He was given a 22 percent chance of survival.
While he was unconscious, Gray found himself at the center of a story that spread across the country.
When Salt Lake City Police Department Detective Jeff Payne requested a blood sample from Gray in connection with the collision, nurse Alex Wubbels refused, the Salt Lake Tribune reported. Per the hospital’s policy — as well as federal law — blood can’t be taken and given to law enforcement unless the patient consents, is under arrest or there is a warrant for the blood draw.
None of those criteria were met, Wubbels tells the officer in a video of her arrest.
However, Payne accused Wubbels of impeding an investigation, cuffed and arrested her, the video shows. Payne has since been put on administrative leave by the police department and an off-duty, private paramedic job, CNN reported.
Though Gray drove trucks for his full-time job, he also served as a reserve officer for the Rigby Police Department in Idaho, KSL reported. The police department announced Gray’s death and left a tribute to him on their Facebook page. The post didn’t specify exactly when Gray died, but said news of his death reached the department Monday night.
“Bill was truly the best of mankind,” the post says. “Always willing to help, always willing to go the extra mile. Bill was a big man, with a bigger heart. Everything about him was generous and kind.”
The rest of the tribute — which includes a few stories about Gray — can be read in the Facebook post embedded below.